It was announced on Wednesday that Everton Women midfielder and Spanish international Damaris Egurrola has completed a six-figure transfer to the most dominant team in European soccer, Olympique Lyonnais. The Spaniard just joined the Toffees in September after her contract with Athletic Bilbao expired.
Everton reportedly turned down several previous offers from Lyon, but, according to Sporting and Commercial Director, Sarvar Ismailov, “The reason we are letting Damaris go is because we want her to fulfill her dream.”
“Sanctioning the transfer wasn’t financially driven on our part,” Ismailov said. “We turned down three previous offers from Lyon but, ultimately, I couldn’t take that opportunity away from Damaris and her family.”
Throughout her time in Merseyside, Egurrola established herself as one of the rising stars in the most competitive league in Europe. She also developed into one of the top defensive midfielders in the WSL, protecting Everton’s backline and always looking to move the ball forward. Her composure and poise on the ball belie her age, as her reading and soccer IQ illustrated a 21-year-old star in the making.
Egurrola started in each of the six league matches she played for Everton and helped lead the Toffees to wins against Aston Villa (6–0) and West Ham (3–1). Of the 526 minutes she played, Egurrola lined up as a central defensive midfielder and as the left-sided center-back, highlighting her defensive versatility.
In the Continental Cup, Egurrola played in three matches, totaled 245 minutes out of possible 270 and helped Everton to victories over Liverpool and Manchester United en route to a second-place finish.
And as Everton enjoyed a marvelous run to the FA Cup final, Egurrola again was instrumental to her team’s success — on her debut for the Toffees, Egurrola was a halftime substitute in the quarterfinal against champions Chelsea in what would be Everton’s biggest win (2–1) of the season. She also was instrumental in the semifinal win against Birmingham and played 98 minutes in the heartbreaking loss in the final.
With all that she already has accomplished, at 21, Egurrola undoubtedly is at the precipice of her ascension into the upper echelons of the women’s game. Lyon has won the Champions League a record seven times, winning the title each of the past five years. At Lyon, training with the top players from around the world, Egurrola will only improve on the talents that earned her a move to one of the most prolific soccer teams in history.
Best of luck, Damaris!
.@EvertonWomen, thank you for everything! You made me feel at home from day one, coming to a new country, a new team, but you made me feel confident and comfortable right away. These months have been amazing for me, I’ve had the chance to be part of this great team 1/3 pic.twitter.com/2OYE69ZzxO— Damaris Egurrola (@damarisegu) January 20, 2021
to make my debut at Goodison, to play a final at Wembley, and to play a derby... so many things in such a short time. I’m blessed to have met all the girls and staff here, and I wish everyone you all the best! 2/3— Damaris Egurrola (@damarisegu) January 20, 2021